Housing is undeniably a subject that is very close to the heart of Malaysians.
In fact, as a prime mover of Malaysia’s economy, the property development and construction sector feeds hundreds of thousands of workers dependent on the about-140-related industries.
To take the industry forward, Malaysia needs a holistic approach in rewriting how things have been done repeatedly in the past.
A change in mindset is therefore necessary, as with the buy-in of a clear objective in order to compete on the global stage.
For a start, please consider the following:
1. Consultation and engagement
Introduce any new policy or guideline only after prior consultation with industry stakeholders. This will prevent unnecessary confusion that paralyses — albeit temporarily, but which we can ill afford — the market.
2. Affordable housing
• Provide a clear definition. With land cost being a variable, there is no one-size-fits-all pricing; ambiguity spawns abuse.
• It is great news that there would be a National Affordable Housing Council to streamline planning and implementation across all the agencies involved.
• Build based strictly on location-specific demand or risk a further supply-demand mismatch.
3. Curbing price hike
• Provide transparency in the approval processes.
• Remove discretionary powers.
• Ensure KPI-pegged efficiency.
• Practise a review of cross subsidies.
• Review and reduce compliance cost.
• Incentivise developers to adopt Industrialised Building System.
4. Design and layout
Lifestyle and needs have changed; so must the mindset of the approving authorities.
• There is an urgent need for timely market data.
• Ironically, the key data — incoming supply and its construction progress, recent sales, property types and pricing — are available at various departments. Just join the dots!
6. No flip-flopping, please!
Inconsistent rules and regulations stifle the market. Moving goalposts mid-way in a game is a strict no-no — we have seen this too often.
7. Need for property maintenance
• Government must take the lead.
• Incentivise and encourage the private sector to embrace top-in-class global property management practices.
• Note that poorly-maintained vertical strata homes, especially the lower-cost types, could potentially end up looking like slums in urban areas.
8. Elections in local councils
The sooner the better — for obvious reasons.
• Leave gazetted parks and green lungs alone. These are the heartbeats of a robust and liveable nation.
• Encourage recycling and sustainability.
Yours sincerely, EdgeProp.my
This story first appeared in EdgeProp.my pullout on May 18, 2018. Download EdgeProp.my pullout here for free.